NS&I confirms award of first Rainbow strategic procurement package to IBM

NS&I today confirms that a major milestone for its Rainbow transformation programme has been achieved, with IBM being awarded the first strategic procurement package.

NS&I’s Rainbow programme will see it switch from a single outsource provider to a multi-provider model. It will ensure that NS&I continues to operate safely and can respond in a nimble, proactive way to changes in policy or the market, also enabling it to scale up its business more efficiently when required. The programme will also enable NS&I to continue to deliver its Inspire & Invest strategy and fulfil its vision of becoming a self-service digital business with support for vulnerable and excluded people, whilst also reducing NS&I’s running costs for the taxpayer.

IBM will be delivering Digital Integration and Service Operations for NS&I, which will be the technical and operational centre of NS&I’s future operating model. It focuses on implementing a future integration platform to support upcoming business change, as well as providing Service Operations capabilities to establish a stable state for delivering NS&I’s long-term business objectives. The contract started on 31 May 2022 and will run through to 31 March 2028, with the option to extend this for up to two years.

IBM will be designing and delivering the integration platform, providing the services to implement the required system interfaces and to undertake operational monitoring, management and maintenance of the system integrations. IBM will also be providing a central security monitoring service for the entirety of the future NS&I technology footprint.

The contract award is the culmination of a competitive procurement process, which began in August 2021. The procurement process concluded that IBM proposed the highest quality solution within budget, offering a value for money outcome for NS&I, its customers and UK taxpayers.

NS&I’s core services are currently provided by Atos IT Services UK Limited, which manages sales processing and customer servicing, together with IT and infrastructure services. This contract will expire on 31 March 2024 and it is a legal requirement that NS&I undertake the procurement processes to replace the existing contract ahead of this date.

Matthew Smith, NS&I Chief Operating Officer and Rainbow Programme Senior Responsible Owner, said:

“I am delighted to achieve our first major milestone in our Rainbow programme and to welcome IBM as one of our new partners in delivering NS&I’s future operating model. IBM demonstrated a strong understanding of NS&I’s requirements and proposed a high quality solution, whilst also delivering for our customers and taxpayers. IBM have a long history of delivering in this field and we are looking forward to working with such a high quality partner.

“This is the first of several contract awards over the next few years that will assist us in transforming our business to ensure that we have a strong, resilient infrastructure and a flexible and scalable operation that can continue to serve savers and the Government for generations to come.”

Notes to Editors

  1. NS&I launched its Rainbow programme on 20 April 2021 with a market engagement event. The event provided potential suppliers with a greater understanding of NS&I and its ambitions for the future of the business and introduced the objectives and timelines of the procurement exercises.
  2. The procurement process is being conducted in accordance with the Public Procurement Regulations and it is expected to complete by summer 2023, in time to allow the transition to the new services.
  3. NS&I outsourced its back office operations to Siemens IT Solutions and Services, now Atos, in 1999 under a competitively tendered public private partnership.
  4. The current contract with Atos, which started in 2014, saved the taxpayer over £550 million up to 2021. The contract has delivered significant benefits to NS&I’s customers, including enhanced services on the transactional website, the introduction of the lower £25 minimum investment for Premium Bonds, allowing family and friends to buy Premium Bonds for children, NS&I’s Junior ISA and the introduction of a smartphone app. In 2019, the contract with Atos was extended for a further three years, from 2021 until 2024.